Bruce Springsteen visits Kildare town to trace Irish roots

US singer visited town where his great-great-grandmother is believed to have left for America

Bruce Springsteen visits Shane MacGowan ahead of playing a series of gigs at the RDS beginning on Friday. Photograph: Victoria Mary Clarke via Twitter

Bruce Springsteen paid a surprise visit to the small Co Kildare town of Rathangan, as part of a low-key series of events exploring his Irish roots, ahead of his upcoming three concerts in Dublin.

His great-great-grandmother Anne Garrity emigrated from Ireland to the US, and is believed to have left the Rathangan area in Co Kildare during the Famine, before later settling in New Jersey.

The US singer-songwriter visited a number of spots in the town on Thursday, in a trip that was kept under wraps until late the evening beforehand.

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During the visit Springsteen dropped in to see a local creative performance art youth group, as well as stopping into the Burrow pub in Rathangan. Springteen also visited a library in Newbridge where a presentation was made to the singer about his Irish ancestry.

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The US singer is playing three concerts in the RDS Arena in Dublin, with the gigs taking place on Friday, Sunday and Tuesday.

Earlier in the week the rock singer visited The Pogues former frontman Shane MacGowan at his home.

Jack Power

Jack Power

Jack Power is acting Europe Correspondent of The Irish Times